Effect of acute uremia on arginine metabolism and urea and guanidino acid production by perfused rat liver

Guido O. Perez, Barbara Rietberg, Barbara Owens, Eugene R. Schiff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Since arginine is a precursor of urea and other guanidino derivatives, we have evaluated its metabolism in acute uremia using the isolated perfused rat liver. Female Sprague-Dawley rats underwent bilateral nephrectomy (n=5) or sham operation (n=5) 48 h prior to liver perfusion. Fifty μCi of l-[guanidino14C arginine and unlabelled arginine and aspartic acid were added to the recycling perfusate 15 min prior to liver perfusion. Perfusate concentrations of urea and other guanidino derivatives were measured with high-pressure liquid chromatography. After the initial 30 min of perfusion, net uptake of arginine was lower, and net release of guanidino-succinic acid (GSA) was higher in the livers of acutely uremic rats. Net release of urea was also higher in uremia but the results did not achieve statistical significance. In uremia, the percent conversion of14C arginine to14C urea was significantly higher (79 ±5 [SE]%) than in controls (58±7%). These results demonstrate increased GSA production by livers of acutely uremic rats and suggest that acute uremia may be associated with increased arginine utilization and increased production of urea.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)275-278
Number of pages4
JournalPflügers Archiv European Journal of Physiology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Oct 1 1977


  • Arginine metabolism
  • Isolated perfused liver
  • Kidney failure, acute
  • Urea synthesis
  • Uremia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology


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